Sen. King: We must renew Ex-Im Bank

Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) pleaded with Republican colleagues to “wake up” and reauthorize the Export-Import Bank by Sept. 30 — before it shuts down.

“We’ve got until September 30th to fix this, and I sure hope my colleagues in Congress can wake up to the fact that this is one government agency that really makes a difference and ought to be allowed to continue helping American jobs,” King said on Tuesday.

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Republicans are divided over whether Ex-Im, which provides financing for projects designed to increase U.S. exports, should be renewed. Some conservatives argue the bank is a form of corporate welfare, but Democrats said the program is needed to keep the United States economically competitive with countries that heavily subsidize industries.

“Imagine a government agency that returns a profit to the Treasury, helps American manufacturers sell their products abroad, and helps create jobs. That’s the Export-Import Bank,” King said. “For some reason that I absolutely cannot understand there are people in Washington who want to put it out of business after about 80 years of successfully helping American businesses across the country.”

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has said the Senate will vote on a five-year extension of the bank shortly after the Senate returns from August recess on Sept. 8.

— Kevin Cirilli contributed to this article. 

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